This title was first published in 2000: Comprising over one-third of the land area of Israel, the Negev is home to more than 400,000 residents representing one of the most unusual ethnic mixes in the world. Immigrants from many regions and countries: North Africa, Ethiopia, the Middle East, India, Europe, North and South America, and the Republics of the former Soviet Union, now reside in the Negev along with indigenous Bedouin Arabs and Jews born in Israel. Transitions is a dedication to the Negev people, brought together by Richard Isralowitz of Ben Gurion University, Israel and Jonathan Friedlander of the University of California, Los Angeles. It documents a year in the lives of three groups of people through carefully selected and expertly written chapters contributed by Israeli scholars familiar with issues of immigration and immigrant absorption, regional development, health, education, as well as racial and ethnic conflict concerning Russian, Ethiopian and Bedouin people of Israel’s arid southern region. The chapters are juxtaposed with the vivid and provocative colour and black and white images of photographer Ron Kelley who focuses on the process of assimilation, within the broader context of Israeli society, revealing complications of nationalism, ethnic rivalries and competition over limited resources, amidst a prevailing concern for national security. Prepared with support from the US/Israel Binational Education Foundation (Fulbright Scholars Program) and the Israel Council of Higher Education, Transitions is an extraordinary and unique study of people, their environment and interaction.
’…a series of powerful essays and brilliant photographs…In the tradition of Sebastiao Salgado, Robert Frank and Erving Goffman, Kelley’s photographs reverberate with the irony and poignancy of human agency confronting circumstance. Isralowitz, Friedlander and Kelly provide us with a new way of thinking about the integration of social science, journalism and visual art that is immediate, reflective and contextually rich. This book offers the most stunning documentation that I have seen of what transpires when diverse global forces converge in a local setting. A captivating case study of the human outcome of social policy.’ Steven J. Gold, Michigan State University, USA ’…a highly professional, well crafted effort…raises the standard of how to study and present the mosaic of people in this country…Through its well written chapters and poignant photography, Transitions is an unparalleled account…a source of inspiration and guide for what this country has and needs to do to move its people forward in the new millennium.’ Haim Divon, Center for International Co-operation, Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs ’This book would be valuable to those interested in Diaspora and emigration issues.’ British East-West Journal ’…an extraordinarily moving and exceedingly well-produced book.’ The Jerusalem Post ’…an easy, flowing read…The pictures are an integral part of the book, making it beautiful and evocative…I was impressed by the authors’ love for the place and their empathy towards its people which they skilfully convey and share with the reader.’ International Migration ’…an important contribution to the ongoing discussion of the effects and consequences of mass immigration on Israel’s economy and society…an interesting and superbly illustrated book.’ Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies
Contents: Introduction; The Negev: a region on the periphery of Israeli social and economic development, Yehuda Gradus and Richard Isralowitz; Ruminating over fifty years of Negev settlement, Haim Chertok; The impact of mass immigration on urban settlements in the Negev, David Newman; The Nahal Beka experience: Ethiopian and Soviet immigrant Jews in a caravan absorption centre, Richard Isralowitz; Competition, discrimination and conflict: perspectives on Russian immigrants in the Negev, Richard Isralowitz and Ismael Abu Saad; Bureaucratic patronage of Ethiopian immigrants, Esther Hertzog; Changing health behaviour among populations in transition, Julie Cwikel; Dances with camels: Al-Okhbi and Rahat, Haim Chertok; Education, transition and the future of the Negev Bedouin Arabs, Ismael Abu Saad; Index.
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